By the Grace of G‑d
Beg. of Marcheshvan, 5734.
Brooklyn, N.Y.

To the Sons and Daughters of
Our People Israel, Everywhere—
G‑d bless you all!

Greetings and Blessing:

Coming from the month of Tishrei, the seventh (שביעי) and “plentiful”1 month (משובע בכל), both materially (overflowing wine—and oil-presses) and spiritually (many festivals and Mitzvoth), hence the source of these benefits for all the months of the year,2 materially and spiritually,

We are reminded of the custom in some communities to proclaim at the outgoing moments3 of Simchath Torah (the culmination and final key-note of all the festivals4 of Tishrei): “And Yaakov went his way,” meaning, his prescribed way and G‑dly service, his way of life,5 throughout the year.

This is the way which our Sages define in terms of: “I was created to serve my Master,”6 or, to use another often quoted expression, “To make an abode for Him, blessed be He, on earth below.”7

This abode-making is accomplished through the fulfilment of G‑d’s Will, namely, the study of Torah and the practice of its Mitzvoth, including the imperative, “All your actions should be for the sake of heaven,” and “Know Him in all your ways.”8

And it is the month of Tishrei, which ushers in the new year, particularly the festivals of this month, that provides the resources—spiritual powers and material means—to accomplish the above.

Inasmuch as all matters of the Torah are meaningful in all their details, how much more so such a comprehensive matter relating to Tishrei, it is significant that all the festivals of the month of Tishrei are “sealed” with Zman Simchoseinu, the Season of Our Rejoicing and Simchath Torah. This reemphasizes pointedly the explicit commandment, “Serve G‑d with joy,”9—with true joy10 derived from G‑d’s Torah and G‑d’s precepts that “rejoice the heart.”11

What has been said above regarding the meaningfulness of all details in Torah, applies, of course, also to the time element. For although each year the month of Tishrei sets the tone and provides the benefits for the entire year, each new year also introduces additional new elements pertaining to it, and each year brings its own distinctive teaching. Thus, the special teaching of the current year is related to its distinctive feature which sets it apart from the six years preceding it and the six years following, in that it is the year of Hakhel: “Gather together all the people, the men, women and children.”12

To be sure, this Mitzvah—in its plain and actual form—is confined to the Holy Land, “the13 land which...always (including the time of Golus) G‑d’s eyes are on it, from the beginning14 of the year to the end of the year,” and to the time of the Beth Hamikdosh. However, the spiritual aspects and contents of all Mitzvoth are eternal,15 being part of our eternal Torah.—

The general character of the Mitzvah of Hakhel calls for the implementation of its contents and purpose not on an individual basis, but in the manner of Hakhel, i.e. congregationally and collectively, with multitudes of participants, and with special emphasis on congregating the young, including boys and girls of tender age,16 and for the purpose specified in the Torah: “That they should heed to do all the words of this Torah.”17 Specifically:

“That they should heed ” (ושמרו)—also in the sense of eager anticipation and longing,18

“To do ”—in actual practice, not being content19 with merely a “good heart”, “good intention,” or “good resolution,” but in actual deed,

All the words of the Torah”—a person should not think that since his merits outweigh his demerits, and by a substantial margin, he has already done his duty, for one is required to fulfill all the words of

This Torah”—as if “pointing a finger” demonstratively and emphatically that this is the Torah exactly as it was given to Mosheh at Sinai, the Written Torah together with its interpretation, the Oral Torah,20 free from any, G‑d forbid, distortion, misinterpretation, compromise, etc.

The significance of the said Hakhel concept has been accentuated by the events that began on the Holy Day [Yom Kippur] in this Hakhel-Year, directed against our men, women and children as a Kehila Kadisha [Holy Congregation].

But the togetherness of our people in the spirit of Hakhel will stand our people in good stead, as it did in the past, in fulfilment of the prophetic promise: “The L-rd21 of Hosts shall shield them”—His people, the “unique and united people on earth;”22 “He redeemed them, elevated them, and exalted them all the days of the world.”

And as Jews gather together to increasingly implement the Hakhel objective: That they should heed to do all the words of this Torah, spreading the light of Torah and Mitzvoth in an ever growing measure,

They dispel the darkness of the Golus, and thereby (through Torah and Mitzvoth in the daily life) bring closer the coming of our Righteous Moshiach and our true and complete Geulo,

“And all the earth will be filled with (G‑d’s) glory.”23

With esteem and blessing for good tidings

in all above

/Signed: Menachem Schneerson/

This is an appropriate time to call attention again24 to the appeal for Torah and Tzedoko in everyday practice, in light of the prophet’s words: “Zion shall be redeemed through Mishpot (Torah) and its returnees through Tzedoko.”

And in regard to Torah study—it should include, in addition to the regular Shiurim, the three daily Shiurim of Chumash, Tehillim and Tanya (ת”חת), which our Saintly Rebbes of Chabad, linked with an allusion to the verse: “And the dread (חתת) of G‑d was upon the cities that were round about them,” referring to the journey of Yaakov and his children towards Beth-el25 (“House of G‑d”).